The sound of the chopper made the workers of BSAA worked up, raising their eyes to see the survivors back from the Kijuju mission. Chris Redfield, now hero to the world, gets out of the chopper with Sheva Alomar, his partner, following behind him. The BSAA members applauded at them. Cheers roared around them.
"Chris!" a voice shouted among the crowd.
Chris whips his head around. Rebecca Chambers; a friend of Chris, a former member of the original eleven of S.T.A.R.S., came running towards him, pushing herself through the crowd.
"Rebecca!" Chris shouted back, waving at her.
Once Rebecca reached Chris, she pulled into a hug. She cried and told him that he was reckless and made her worry. Chris smiled and patted her head, he told her that he was ok and that he's back home.
Rebecca wiped her tears away and smiled up at him.
"Glad to see you back in one piece, Chris." Rebecca said.
Chris smiled at her. "Glad to see you too, Becca."
Rebecca looked down at her feet, tears welling up again. "If Jill was still around
She would have been very proud of you, Chris
Chris opened his mouth, but was interrupted by a voice behind him.
"Oh, I am very proud of Chris, Rebecca."
Rebecca's head shot up and her eyes widened in shock. Her face went pale and she felt like her legs were about to buckle. She stared at the woman, who was still inside the chopper. Darkness loomed over the woman's features, but Rebecca recognized that voice. She couldn't be wrong, but
Finally, the woman stepped into the light, her blonde hair glistening from the lights. She hopped down from the chopper and went to stand beside Chris. She smiled at the dumbstruck Rebecca Chambers.
"It can't be
" Rebecca said, clearly shocked.
There she was. The famous Jill Valentine. In the flesh. Though her hair had changed from chocolate brown to a pale blonde and her eye color looked like it got sucked away leaving an almost white color
She's still the Jill Valentine.
Murmurs started to arise. Jill smiled at her. She was still wearing the purple battle suit from Kijuju and the battle scar was still visible on her chest.
"The one and only, Rebecca." Jill said.
Tears came falling down like a waterfall. When the news about what happened to Jill, Rebecca broke down hard. Rebecca wasn't able to concentrate on working and her mind would wander somewhere else. She was able to move on after a month, seeing that nothing will change if she kept it up.
Jill stood beside Chris, smiling at her friend. Finally, after a moment, Rebecca ran to Jill and hugged her. Rebecca tightened her hold around the older woman, feeling that she might not be real and would fade away. Jill laughed softly and hugged Rebecca in return.
"Alright that's enough, Becca. You might hurt her." Chris chuckled.
Rebecca pulled away from Jill and wiped her teary eyes again.
"I can't help it. I mean, you're alive!" Rebecca choked.
Jill smiled once more.
"But how did you survive, Jill? I thought you pushed Wesker down that mansion with you two years ago."
Chris looked at Jill for a moment. Tiredness was visible on her face. He noticed dark circles forming under her eyes.
"Maybe we can discuss that next time, Becca." Chris said as he placed his hand on Jill's shoulder.
Rebecca looked at Jill and then to Chris.
"Oh. Of course! What was I thinking? I'm sorry, Jill. That was insensitive of me," Rebecca apologized.
Jill shook her head.
"It's ok. It's been so long, that's all."
Chris stepped to her side and moved his hand from Jill's shoulder to her hip. Jill looked up to him and smiled, masking her tiredness. Chris smiled back at her.
"You can stay at my place for awhile and some of your stuff is still with me."
Jill nodded at this. She remembered when she had to work late; Chris would always offer her to stay at his place since she lived far from the office, so she will always pack and leave clothes at his guestroom in case of emergencies.
"After 2 years, you still kept them?" Jill said.
Chris blushed and smiled sheepishly at her.
"You two should get going soon." Rebecca suggested.
Chris and Jill both nodded. They said their goodbyes to Rebecca, Sheva, and Josh, and they proceeded to walk to the car that the BSAA had lent Chris. Suddenly, Rebecca called out to Chris.
"Chris!" Rebecca called out.
Chris turned to look at her, his hand never leaving Jill's hip.
"Better get home fast, ok? The little tyke was worried about you!" She shouted and waved.
Chris nodded and looked at Jill. Her eyes curiously looked up at him. Chris just smiled at her, apologetically. The drive to his place was silent. Both were exhausted and catching up can be done in the morning.
They arrived at Chris' apartment. Jill's eyes wandered around his place, noticing the cleanliness, not like two years ago before they were sent out on a mission to track down Ozwell Spencer. The furniture was arranged neatly now and nothing was scattered on the floor.
"Wow." Jill breathed out.
Chris just chuckled at her as he locked his door, carefully not making a sound. Jill turned to him.
"It's been so long since I've been here and this is the first time I've seen it
a lot has happened while you were gone
" Chris said with a tinge of sadness in his voice.
Jill noticed and touched his arm. She smiled at him. Chris smiled at her in return. Suddenly, they heard a door open on the other side of Chris' hallway. Both adults turned to look at a little girl, who was rubbing her eyes.
"Daddy?" She called out, still rubbing her eyes.
Jill's eyes widened at this and looked at Chris. Chris just stared at the little girl in front of him, not looking at Jill for a moment, and then he walked up to the little girl.
Jill's shoulders slumped down in disappointment. Chris had finally settled down and now has a family. What hurt more is that she isn't the woman for Chris. Then again, Chris probably just thinks of her as a friend and his partner.
"Hey kiddo. Sorry, did we wake you up?" Chris said softly, kneeling on one knee to the girl's height but still towering over her.
Jill took the time to examine the little girl. She looked about two years old. Like Chris, her hair is dark brown and her eyes, Jill noticed, are the same shade of blue. Even in the dark, she noticed the little girl holds a bit of mischievousness behind those beautiful blue eyes of hers.
'Definitely a Redfield.' Jill thought to herself.
The little girl rubbed her eyes once more with one hand and in a weak voice she answered her dad, "No
I had a bad dream
Chris stroked the little girl's hair as she said this. Chris smiled down at his daughter, still stroking her hair. "Oh? Is that so?" he stated, "Well, don't worry. It's just a nightmare. Nothing bad."
The little girl nodded. She looked up and her eyes found to Jill's. Her eyes widened as she noticed the older woman standing near the dining table. Her eyes curiously loomed over Jill. Yes, definitely a Redfield.
Chris looked back at Jill then to the little girl. He smiled to his daughter. "Do you remember her, Val? She's daddy's friend."
The little girl nods in reply. Val always saw pictures of Jill with her dad and when he told her stories, even though she couldn't understand most of it. You can't blame a two year old girl. Val suddenly tugs Chris' sleeve.
"What's wrong?" Chris asked.
Val cheeks turned pink, still holding her father's sleeve. "Cho..."
Chris grinned at her at this, seeing what she wanted. Chris looped his arm under Val's small legs and carried her.
"Seeing we're awake now and kiddo, here, won't be able to go to sleep until she has her treat
why don't we catch up right now in the kitchen? Is that okay with you Jill?"
Jill looked at Chris and his daughter. They really look alike. She smiled a little and nodded. "Maybe you should wake up your wife as well?" Jill couldn't help but ask.
Chris looked at her, his eyes held a bit of sadness in them, and shook his head. Jill was still confused at this point.
"I'll explain everything." That was all what he said and proceeded to walk towards the kitchen.
He settled Val in one of the chairs and Jill sat on one chair across from the little girl. Jill noticed that Val was staring at her. Jill lifted her hand and waved at the little girl. Val's eyes widened at this and waved at Jill back. Jill smiled at this.
Chris, with his back at them, said "Val, could you get clothes for Jill? You know where they are, right, honey?"
Val looked at her father and nodded. She got off from her chair and ran off. Her small feet padded softly until the sound of her footsteps disappeared into one of the rooms. Jill looked at Chris' back as he opened the cupboard and reached for three cups.
"She's a wonderful girl." Jill said, breaking the silence.
Chris placed the cups down and reached in another cupboard, taking out three white packs. "Yes, she is. Quite a handful too, for a 2 year old," he says without looking at her.
"She must have gotten it from her mother." Jill commented as Chris shook one pack.
Chris shrugged and opened the pack. He tilted the open pack towards the cup and brown powder poured out. "I wouldn't know, really."
"What do you mean?"
Chris opened another pack and did the same thing to another cup. He shrugged at her question, not looking at her in the eye. His lips tightened into a line.
Chris was about to open the third pack, when soft padding of footsteps came into the kitchen. Val, holding clothes for Jill, walked towards her. She outstretched her short arms, waiting for Jill to take the clothes from her.
Jill took them and patted Val's head. "Thank you."
Val smiled and stepped back a bit. She, then, pointed out of the kitchen, indicating where the bathroom is. Jill chuckled a little, knowing where the bathroom is without Val pointing where it was, but she just nodded and proceeded to the bathroom, clothes in hand.
Inside the bathroom, Jill took a deep breath and stared at her reflection. Her skin had gone pale, her eyes looks diluted, and her hair had turned from her brown to a blonde. The battle scar was still visible on her chest. She sighed and stripped out of the battle suit.
After a few moments, Jill came out of the bathroom wearing clothes that Val had given her. She took a quick bath, so she wouldn't smell bad in front of Val. She walked towards the kitchen and sees Chris' back facing her. Jill looked around for Val and noticed that Chris' hand was moving. Jill laughed inwardly. Apparently, Chris' frame was too big and Val looked so hidden with Chris' back facing her. She walked back to her seat and sat down.
Val was sitting on Chris' lap. Fumbling the small spoon she had on her hand and a hot chocolate with a bit of whip cream in front of her, waiting for the little girl to devour it.
"Thanks for keeping these clothes for me." She stated and continued, "I'm surprise that you kept them after 2 years I was gone."
Chris looked at Jill. "I couldn't bear to take it out
Val looked up to her father. The head of the spoon is now on her mouth. Val's big bright blue eyes stared at her father's blue eyes, as she was looking for a sign. Chris smiled and stroked her head.
"Go ahead, honey." Chris cooed and looked back to Jill, "I hope you don't mind having hot chocolate. The little one won't go back to bed until she had it. It helps her calm down."
Jill shook her head saying she doesn't mind. Val grabbed her cup and pulled it a little closer to her. She raised the spoon and dipped it on the whip cream. She took a little of the whip cream and ate it as it were ice cream.
Jill laughed at the sight, 'How cute.' She thought.
Chris cleared his throat making Jill turned her attention to him. His eyes darted away from her for a while then looked at her pale blue eyes. He looked hesitant at first, but he took a deep breath.
"I'm glad you're alive, Jill." He finally said it.
Jill looks down at her cup. "Me too
"I-I was a wreck, you know. I went back to smoking and drank like there was no tomorrow. I caused nothing but trouble to everyone
" Chris said as he stroked Val's hair.
Jill wanted to stop Chris, but curiosity got the best of her. She wanted to know what happened two years ago after they presumed her to be dead. She reached out and touched Chris' big hands with hers.
Chris sighed. "After that, I was put into a lot of stress. Work piled up, new recruits, training. I couldn't handle it
I even punched Leon on the face for cracking a joke
Jill cringed at this. She remembered an irritating Chris punched a fellow officer when they were still working for R.P.D. for accidentally splashing coffee his face with coffee. Jill stopped Chris, but when he saw her; he just winked at her and left.
"God, Claire couldn't handle it
She couldn't handle seeing me in such a horrible state
So she moved in with Leon
At first, it didn't matter to me but when she left
I broke down. I felt alone." His voice started to quiver.
"That night, I went drinking with Barry. It was getting late and I was drunk so Barry offered to drive me back home, but I didn't want to go home. So I told him to leave me in the bar and he did, he probably didn't want to make a scene with me." Chris drank his hot chocolate, carefully not making a mess.
"Then a woman came up to me and asked for a drink. I must have been really drunk, because I keep seeing your face in that woman. Drunkenness, stress, and depress was not a good combination
Of course, one thing led to another."
Jill swallowed hard. The hot chocolate was beginning to get cold. Her eyes searched for Chris', but his was cast down at the little girl sitting down on his lap. Val didn't seem to mind the heavy atmosphere since she was enjoying the warmth of her father and the hot chocolate.
Chris gulped a mouthful of cocoa and wiped his lips with a tissue. "I woke up the next morning in some hotel. I called up Barry to come and get me since my car wasn't there and I couldn't catch any cabs."
Jill lifted the cup to her lips. The drink had gone cold. She felt her stomach churn a little.
"Barry picked me up and brought me home. Before I entered my bedroom, he punched me on the face and told me that I should straighten myself up. Everyone was worried about me."
"Do you think Jill would be happy to see you like this? She didn't sacrifice her life just for you to become a wreck, Chris!" Barry shouted and left Chris grasping his cheek.
Chris remembered that day clearly. Holding his cheek as Barry left angrily. He called Claire to apologize for everything and Claire just cried saying it was ok and that he was going through hard times. He even apologized to Leon for punching him on the face, but got punched back as a joke. Chris smiled at this.
"I still smoked a little after that and I started working out to relieve a bit of stress."
Jill looked at his physique. Clearly he changed a lot after 2 and a half years after the incident. His shoulders were broader, his arms were bulging, and you can see veins popping out. Sometimes she wondered if he took steroids while working out, but she shook that away.
"A couple of months later it was Valentine's Day and I went visit your grave, I received a call from the hospital." His eyes looked down at Val, who just finished her chocolate. "They told me that a womas was having my baby. Of course, I couldn't believe it, but that night at the hotel
Jill's hands were now shaking. This was hard for her. The man she loved is now a father. She wanted to cry, but tears won't come out.
Val turned to her side and cuddled against his chest. Both grownups didn't notice that she yawned delightedly from the hot chocolate she had. Her eyes were wandering somewhere else until she looked to her father and snuggled closer.
"When I arrived at the hospital, the woman died of childbirth. Apparently she had a weak heart and having a baby was too much for her frail body." Chris gulped. "I was planning to put the baby up for adoption since I didn't know what to do and having a kid was hard enough for me, but when I saw her in that small incubator and I held her
I knew I couldn't do it
Chris' hand travelled up to Val's head and pushed her closer to him. Val giggled at this, enjoying the affection of her father. She snuggled closer to her father.
"I'm glad you didn't." Jill said, smiling at the father and daughter in front of her.
She remembered her own father. Dick Valentine. The infamous burglar. Her own mother had also died of childbirth and Dick was the only one to raise her.
Chris now looked at Jill and knew what she was thinking. "I named her Valentine; Val for short, since she was born on February 14
" he trailed off, blushing a bit.
Jill's eyes widened at this. He named his daughter after her surname. Valentine Redfield. Both grownups were staring at each other's eyes, not noticing that Val had fallen asleep.